Woman hit by tram in Blackpool

The first major pedestrian versus tram incident has happened on the upgraded Blackpool Tramway when a woman in her early 20s was hit by a tram on the newly installed pedestrian crossing near Lauderdale Avenue in Cleveleys – the location where local residents had been fighting to keep a road crossing open. The incident happened at approximately 1240 on Wednesday 4th July and the woman was taken to Blackpool Victoria Hospital for treatment to injuries to her legs. Regrettably local Councillors used the incident to try and score political points by continuing their campaign to get the road crossing reinstated. As unfortunate as this incident is for the woman concerned it should be remembered that the tramway is safer than it has ever been with improved braking on the Flexities meaning they can stop quicker.

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4 Responses to Woman hit by tram in Blackpool

  1. Ken Walker says:

    The trams have always been safe, it’s the people who go near them that are dangerous. People, the younger end in particular, need to be encouraged to take some responsibility for their own safety. Talking on mobiles or texting while walking, listening to ipods through earphones that block other noises out, are all dangerous distractions as they make the user forget about their environment. Then we get the “experts” suggesting making the trams 4mph at crossings. At that speed we might as well park the trams up and let everybody walk!
    While hoping the lady makes a full recovery, I also hope that the driver of the tram is ok. I have heard of train drivers having their career ruined by an incident such as this as they have not been able to face getting back into the cab, even though they have been completely free of any blame. Those emergency brakes are quite ferocious too. Anybody been on a Metrolink tram when the driver has been instructed to pass a signal at red? Even at walking pace passengers have to be warned to brace themselves for the sudden stop

  2. Colin Smith says:

    Couldn’t agree more with the comments about the casual attitude of pedestrians. Both young and old are to blame, however, as Ken. says the younger ones with their various distracting gadgets are the worst offenders.

    Only this afternoon I was out and about in the centre of Manchester on various trams and the drivers were unceasingly attempting to clear people off the centre of the tracks, particularly walking down Market Street, and the main response seemed to be to show two finger salutes. Sorry, but if I were put in the position of these drivers I’d be inclined to scare the pants off them. Even at walking pace, the emergency brakes on any of the Metrolink trams, but especially the new M5000’s, is a most uncomfortable experience for the passengers, particularly those who are forced, at weekends and during peak times, to stand.

    • Lee says:

      Metrolink trams also have the louder horns for the reserved track sections they could use if there’s anyone in the way.

      I have also been on the Metrolink when there have been people walk right out infront of the tram, one time the driver sounded the horn (street horn) and the pedestrian had continued infront of the tram, the driver then had to stop as quick as possible. This was actually on the Eccles line at a road crossing where trams are usually going faster than in the city centre and you would usually check for trams, especially if you notice the cars are stopping at the lights as well.

  3. John Stewart says:

    One reason that accidents , indeed any thing negative concerning trams, are so sensitive in places like Cleveleys is down to local politics. Not particularly party politics, but simple Local Authority rivalry. Blackpool is the big bad vulgar unitary elephant in a Fylde that is otherwise under a three tier system of Parish (or Town) Councils, District Councils and Lancashire County Council. The trams are seen as the penetrative arm of Blackpool Council, intruding into genteel districts whose main industry is providing homes for the retired of the north-west.

    Local Councillors cannot resist the temptation to champion their constituents’ concerns but unfortunately they do it to the extent of forgetting the principle of personal responsibility and seek to demonise the nasty tram whenever one of their residents walks in front of one. When will one of these Councillors say: “It was your fault, don’t blame the driver or the operator and they have every right to sue you”?

    The solution is further reorganisation to make the entire Fylde a single Unitary Authority.

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